Friday, August 24, 2007

Open House

Today was the day we got to visit Sam and Jack's new schools. As you may know, Sam is starting kindergarten on Monday and Jack, in addition to his regular preschool, will be attending county-run special ed school starting after Labor Day.

Both of those schools held their open houses today, a time for kids and parents to go in, meet the teachers, and see the classrooms. Fortunately the two open houses (at different schools) followed each other, rather than being scheduled at the same time.

Alex spent the morning prepping Sam to meet his teacher. He told him to extend his right hand, shake hers, and tell her his name. He told him this five or six times.

"Are you convinced that if Open House doesn't go well, he'll end up a convict?" I asked.

"That's right."

Well he needn't have worried. Sam was totally well-behaved and mannerly. This is him working on the classroom scavenger hunt the teacher had set up:

It was actually pretty humorous because we had jazzed them up so much to go see their new schools that when Sam's teacher was giving instructions for the scavenger hunt, Jack stood right in front of her and kept edging forward. And because he kept edging forward, all the other kids kept edging forward too, so as not to be left in the back. I think the teacher had to step back from them at one point.

Oh, and we were smart and took the big parts of Sam's school supply list so he doesn't have to take a wheeled suitcase on Monday.

After the classroom, we wandered around the school to see the cafeteria, the gym, the music room, and the cutest art teacher known to humankind. (Quinn took the art room as an opportunity to attack a temporarily off-guard Sam with safety scissors.) We even spent a few minutes playing on the playground, which is adjacent to a large soccer field on which some kind soul had left a soccer ball:


Then on to Jack's school. We haven't even had our intake meeting for this class, so I was totally unsure of what to expect. It turns out that I should have expected total awesomeness.

The classroom was really nice. Jack's teacher and the assisstant were very nice and seemed extremely competent. Jack, who will only have 35 minutes between the time his morning class ends and this class begins, will be able to eat lunch in the afternoon class. And weirdly enough, that was the thing that had been nagging at me the most (other than how to pick him and Sam up FROM DIFFERENT SCHOOLS AT THE EXACT SAME TIME). Autism schmautism, when is the boy going to be able to eat his peanut butter sandwich?

And the best thing about Jack's trip to his class? Jack actually, honest to god TALKED with another little kid that will be in his class. Although it turns out that Jack is convinced that this child is Little Bill, or, as he says it: Little Biddle. When we were leaving, he called out—totally unprompted—"Bye, Little Biddle!"

(I don't think we've ever watched Little Bill, although I guess they play computer games on Nick, Jr.'s site that feature him. And I'm not sure I approve of him referring to all black kids as "Little Bill," but kudos to him for making a friend.)

I'm just glad neither of my kids are in this class:

Seriously. Wouldn't you change your name?

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